Higgs bosonGuest post by Brian Meeks

I was going to write a post on Pinterest, which has piqued my interest. Yes, the rhyme was intentional… and brilliant.

Well maybe not brilliant, per se, but better than being attacked by an ill tempered gorilla. I like to set the bar low, sometimes burying it.

I digress…

This is NOT a Pinterest post, mostly because I’m preoccupied with my Timeline on Facebook, and not in a good lion cub hugging sort of way.

I see ads “not by facebook.” They are all over my Timeline. There is a banner ad for audible.com with a picture of Steve Jobs trying to get me to buy his book. I will not!

Now, please, let’s remember, this is my Timeline. I am concerned, quite concerned, that these ads might ruin my life and bring about an end to the world. In fact, I’m certain of it.

Imagine the not so distant future, say October 2012, and my Henry Wood Detective series has started to get some traction. Books are selling and there is about three bumblebees’ worth of buzz on the Internet.

One day, possibly Thursday Oct 4, 2012, a woman in Devonshire, U.K. sees a tweet about my book and buys a copy for her sister, who loves mysteries, and sends her a Kindle version. The woman, a lingerie model doing a shoot in the Maldives, starts to read it and is immediately smitten with the author, yours truly.

She is exhausted from the weeks of being excessively pretty. The model would much rather be curled up on the couch contemplating the significance of Higgs boson.

Her boyfriend, a very dashing model in his own right, has begun to bore her. She dumps him and decides to start stalking me through Facebook, which I wholeheartedly approve of, and accept her friend request with glee.

Things seem to be going well, she finds my writing delightful, and then one day she checks out my timeline.

It seems that between posting a link to a snark-filled post about Snooki and another about my upcoming book, I decided to take a break and put up an ad for Viagra, and along the top of the page is a banner extolling the virtues and aerobic benefits of baby seal clubbing.

She is gone forever. 

Naturally, my hope of dating a superhot particle physicist being dashed pushes me over the limit. In my grief I discover the secret to cold fusion and use my unlimited power to attempt to take over the world. It all goes horribly wrong and life as we know it ceases to exist.

Now, I admit that I could probably use some exercise, but I’m not going to club baby seals.

Those little buggers are a lot quicker than they look, so I’d probably start with a non-lethal spin class, and eventually work my way up to running them over with my Schwinn.

The point is that these ads “not by facebook” have nothing to do with my timeline or me.

The ads are placed by uneducated troglodytes who don’t know that Facebook is a proper name and needs to be capitalized. I wish them ill.

What I wonder is why Facebook, in its marketing plans, doesn’t give me an option of paying for their service?  I pay for Spotify. It is worth $4.95 per month to get my music commercial-free.

If Facebook did this, it would raise somewhere between $4.95 and 3.5 billion per month. I don’t mind the ads on the right; that is where I expect them and it is fine that they are there.

I just want to have my Timeline, which represents me and my ramblings, free of ads.

Heck, if they did that, I might even pin Facebook on Pinterest.

Image: jurvetson via Flickr, CC 2.0

Brian Meeks used to make his living in the virtual world of Second Life, where he built spaces for corporate clients under the name Ecocandle Riel. When the economy went south, he turned to Social Media to feed and clothe himself.  In his free time, he does … well … social media … and publishes the blog Extremely Average. He can be reached by email at ExtremelyAverageOne (a) gmail (dot) com, or by carrier pigeon at the house with the big tree out front.